My son and I stayed at the Tarn Hows for a walking weekend. I was attracted by the positive reviews on TripAdvisor. My own experience is that despite a few negative points the stay was an enjoyable one and I rate the place as very good.
First the good points: the entire B&B is immaculate, the rooms are extremely clean and very tastefully decorated. There are hooks on the doors for coats, the hospitality tray has good quality biscuits, good coffee and tea and hot chocolate and real milk rather then powdered. There is a small but good quality modern flat screen TV and a digital alarm clock radio. The room was warm without being too hot and the bed was very comfortable without being too soft. In the ensuite the tumbler is hard plastic, not quite as good as glass but much better than soft plastic, the soap, shampoo etc are good quality. The breakfast was very good, real fruit juice (not squash or watered down juice), a reasonable selection of cereals, yoghurt and a full english with good quality ingredients. I have had fuller and slightly better cooked breakfasts (there was no fried bread, no black pudding and the mushrooms were boiled instead of fried) but it was good. The tea was good, the coffee was average. The service was very good. The host was polite, welcoming and efficient. The street allows on street parking, a rarity in Keswick. I found the cost of this B&B to very reasonable.
Now the negative points: the rooms are extremely small, too small in fact. It felt cramped. There was not enough room for a desk in the main room and not enough space for a bath in the ensuite. The rooms do not have double glazing. In practise this was not a problem but it was a suprise, there was lots of condensation on the windows each morning. The heating is controlled centrally, you do not have the control you think you do. When you turn it on it only comes on if the heating is centrally enabled at the time. The shower was rather feeble and the temperature control was on a hair trigger. This needs to be sorted. The toilet uses a feeble saniflow system so has to be flushed several times rather than just once. There is no lounge. Given the tiny size of the rooms, a lounge would have been welcome.
These negative points are quite minor and if it was not for them I would have ranked the place as excellent. As it is, it just lost a few marks. The biggest issue is that the rooms are tiny; this really wouldn't suit some people (my wife would find it claustrophobic) but we were ok with it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Tarn Hows is a traditional Victorian residence situated in a quiet location only a few minutes walk from the town centre, lake and all amenities. Keswick is the perfect base for your Lake District stay, and if you enjoy freshly- cooked local produce, comfortable, stylish and elegant accommodation with excellent service and hospitality, then Tarn Hows Guest House is the place for you. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Tarn Hows Guest House Keswick, Lake District